Archive for the 'Josh Powell' Category

Catching up with Josh Powell

Former Lakers forward Josh Powell came to STAPLES Center on Tuesday evening with the Atlanta Hawks, whom he signed with after winning his second consecutive ring with the Lakers last June.

Powell, who maintains close relationships with several Lakers, chatted with us prior to receiving his ring from Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher in a pregame ceremony:

On what he misses about L.A.:
Powell: Of course the team and being part of that great, winning situation. It was like a brotherhood with everybody. We all ate together, we had fun, we laughed, we went through hard times and just had a lot of great experiences. The feeling of being a part of the Purple and Gold was special, whether at home or on the road, feeling the love from everybody no matter where you went. I’ve had most of the greatest experiences of my life with this team, and I’m very grateful and fortunate that I was able to be a part of something as special as what we had.

On his continual close relationship with Bryant and Fisher in particular:
Powell: They were like big brothers, and I’m still very close with those guys. We always keep in touch. On and off the court, they definitely helped me grow and mature as a person and as a player. Sometimes (Kobe and I) hit each other up to laugh and joke, sometimes we hit each other to catch up, sometimes we hit each other just to see what’s going on. It’s a lot of different things. I also keep in touch with Shannon (Brown), Luke (Walton) and some of the other guys as well.

On getting his ring from Kobe and Fisher:
Powell: It means a lot to get a ring, but to have guys that I looked up to present it to me is just a big thing. I’ve been asked questions (about the Lakers) since I got here, and I’m not a man who gives speeches, but I’m sure it’s going to be an emotional moment.

On taking over DJ duties in the Hawks’ weight room, as he did for the Lakers throughout his tenure in L.A.:
Powell: I guess it comes from me always being the one that’s in the weight room*. That’s kinda how it started when I was with the Lakers**. I was always the first one in, so I just put the music on. That’s how it’s been in Atlanta, because I’m always working hard on and off the court.
*That, and the fact that Powell’s iPod is now approaching 30,000 songs … literally.
**Phil Jackson actually noted prior to the game that the Lakers always appreciated Powell’s work ethic and what it brought to the team.

On one album we should be sure to catch that’s come out recently, since Powell used to instruct us on what was good in the music world on Lakers.com’s “J-Peezy’s Playlist.”
Powell: You gotta get that Rick Ross “Ashes to Ashes.” That’s a good one.

2010 Exit Interviews: Josh Powell

blog_100625joshpowellLakers reserve forward Josh Powell, stuck behind the NBA’s deepest and most talented front court, saw limited duty in 2009-10, averaging 9.2 minutes per game in 63 regular season appearances, and 3.1 minutes in 13 postseason showings.

Powell managed 2.7 points and 1.8 rebounds in the regular season, with his best stretch coming with Pau Gasol out with a hamstring injury in early November, when Powell scored 13 points with four boards in a win over Memphis, then put up 14 points and seven rebounds in a win over Phoenix.

Powell, a free agent, spoke to media members after his exit interview. Below are the highlights:

- (On his meeting with Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak): “It was very informative. It went pretty good. He gave me what he thought about how the season went for me. There were some notes from coaches about me. He was understanding of the fact that the opportunities were less.” Powell said that Kupchak shared how much the team appreciated Powell’s hard work throughout the season, and that the meeting was overall positive.

- Powell worked very hard to ensure that he was ready to play if called upon by Phil Jackson, both at practice and in the weight room. In fact, trainer Chip Schaefer said that no one put more work into the team’s off court strengthening program.

- While he’s a free agent, Powell revealed that he would prefer to stay in L.A. if given the opportunity: “Of course I love it here. The relationships that I’ve built, and be able to accomplish a lot.”

- Powell was the rare younger player to have the ear of team leaders Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher, which he said he felt came through his work ethic and drive, which is the best way to earn respect from the vets.

- (On how hard it is to stay ready without minutes): “It’s extremely hard because the amount of work that you have to put in more so when you don’t play versus when you do when it comes to conditioning, and those things, you have to put in way more to stay with it. When your number is called, you might get 30 second, you might get 10-15 minutes, you never know.”

- (On how he weighs staying with a winner vs. potentially earning more minutes): “You don’t. I just deal with it as it comes. Everybody wants to win, but everybody can’t win.”

- (On his basketball journey, not the easiest of paths, resulting in two championships): “It’s worth it. I don’t know how to put it into the best answer. For me emotionally and other things that I felt. It’s been worth the ups and downs. It’s been worth everything. I couldn’t really tell you the meaning, I’m just very happy to have gotten to this point.”

The Lakers on Jimmy Kimmel Live

For the second season in a row the Lakers made an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live as the reigning NBA Champions. Click below to see all five parts.


Lakers Welcome Joshua Powell Jr. Into Family

deuce_1***UPDATED WITH PHOTOS
Here’s one way to bring some good news into the building after a tough road trip to Oklahoma City: a healthy new baby boy carrying the name of his father, Josh Powell.

The Lakers reserve forward entered L.A.’s practice facility at around 1 p.m. after, along with his wife Lauren, witnessing the birth of Joshua Dominique Rajae Powell Jr. at 10:25 a.m. on Monday morning, April 26.

deuce_21Joshua Jr., whom Powell will call “Deuce,” is Powell’s third child, following daughters Hayden and Patience into the family. The newest Powell checked in at seven pounds, 13 ounces and 22.5 inches.

Powell said he simply couldn’t be happier to have his new happy and healthy son.

A night later, Powell added five points, a rebound and an assist in seven minutes (not to mention his usual plethora of motivational utterances to his teammates) of L.A.’s 111-87 victory in Game 5 over Oklahoma City.

Powell Sports Fresh Art

Ron Artest suggested that Josh Powell led the team in trash talking, a contention up for debate amongst their teammates.

What’s set in stone, however, is J-Peezy’s lead on the tattoo front, which he cushioned by acquiring additional art in the offseason:

Josh Powell

Photo By Noah Graham, NBA Photos

Several Lakers Gather for Wednesday Workout

Training camp is still a few weeks away for the Lakers, yet several of the players gathered in El Segundo on Wednesday afternoon to shoot, lift and play some pick up ball.

As Shannon Brown explained in the above @Lakers Twitvid, he was joined by Luke Walton, Sasha Vujacic, Ron Artest, Jordan Farmar, Josh Powell and Adam Morrison in addition to some D-Leaguers (to round out a 5-on-5 run).

Prior to the full-court action, some of the players went through lifting and general strenghtening activities with Lakers Director of Athletic Performance Chip Schaefer (Walton and Brown specifically), others got some shots up (Vujacic and Farmar) while others worked with assistant coach Brian Shaw and advance scout/assistant coach Rasheed Hazzard on running L.A.’s offense (Artest and Brown).

“It’s just good to get back in here,” said Walton. “I think we’re all excited about the coming season and eager to get ready to go.”

It won’t be long, since the first preseason game is only three weeks away on October 7 against Golden State.

Lakers in Cabo San Lucas

Josh Powell  Brian ShawNearly two months have passed since L.A.’s 4-1 NBA Finals victory over the Orlando Magic, but the celebrating is far from over.

Just ask Lakers forward Josh Powell, assistant coach Brian Shaw or assistant general manager Ronnie Lester, who were treated to a victory party at the Casa Dorada Los Cabos Resort and Spa down in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Casa Dorada’s general manager Victor Gomez happens to be a bigtime Lakers fan, and he hosted the party in the resort’s B Lounge, which was attended by more than 400 people. Entertainment was provided by Cirque-style jugglers on stilts along with a DJ (not Mbenga), while game highlights played on two big screens flanking the pool.

“Being a die-hard Laker fan, it was an honor to host my favorite team at Casa Dorada,” said Gomez. “We are looking forward to helping other Lakers recharge their batteries before next season’s title defense begins.”

Surely Powell, Shaw and Lester had no problem with regenerating in that manner.

While in Cabo, the player and coach dove into the ocean for a round of early-morning deep sea fishing, along with Shaw’s son B.J. (pictured). Clearly, their Pacific trek was productive, as the fish was used by the hotel’s executive chef, Fabian Rios, for that evening’s meal at 12 Tribes Restaurant.

“The food was fantastic!,” said Shaw, who was also joined in Cabo by his wife Nikki and two daughters Brianna and Bianca. “We had such a great time at Casa Dorada, and look forward to coming back soon.”

Josh Powell Podcast: A Road Less Traveled

Josh PowellKobe Bryant knew he was going to star in the NBA from a young age, and fulfilled his destiny as a teenager after Jerry West and the Lakers traded for his rights.

Pau Gasol grew up thinking he’d be a doctor, but quickly grew to be so good at basketball that he realized he could play for as long as he wanted.

Lakers forward Josh Powell’s basketball story, however, was quite different.

He grew up outside of Atlanta, Georgia, as more of a football and baseball player, with just a touch of the orange ball on the side. A linebacker by trade, standing about 6-2, Powell had no visions of professional basketball. As in, zero. Not even on the radar.

Then, around the age of 15, Powell shot up four or five inches in height. With his spurt came a growth in his love for the hardcourt, and helped him make the Riverdale High School varsity team as a freshman. Long, year-round days at the gym ultimately pushed Powell to N.C. State, and though a modest freshman year didn’t necessarily put his name on an NBA scout’s watch list, Powell exploded towards the end of his sophomore year to earn a spot on the ACC All-Tournament First Team. Finally, the NBA didn’t seem so far away, and after hearing that he could be taken at the end of the first round, Powell decided to leave school after his sophomore year and make himself eligible for the 2003 NBA Draft…

… But he wasn’t drafted.

Thus continued a distant hoops road that found Powell all by his lonesome in foreign lands like Russia and Italy, and in domestic leagues about which you’ve never heard. To take us through his journey in more detailed fashion, Powell called into the Lakers.com Popcorn Machine from his home in North Carolina.

You can listen to the interview by CLICKING HERE.

Powell, Mbenga Back for 2009-10

ts_090701powellmbengaPower forward Josh Powell and center D.J. Mbenga will remain on the Lakers’ roster for the 2009-10 season after L.A. opted not to terminate their respective non-guaranteed contracts by the July 1 deadline, according to Lakers spokesman John Black.

Powell and Mbenga each had a year left on their contracts, and since neither was acted upon, the 6-10 and 7-0 post players are guaranteed through the coming season.

Powell averaged 4.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 11.7 regular season minutes and 2.1 points with 1.2 boards in 5.2 postseason minutes during L.A.’s championship run. He showed his value when afforded ample playing time, highlighted by a 17-point, 9-rebound performance on March 11 at Houston when the Lakers were without Andrew Bynum (injury) and Lamar Odom (suspension).

Mbenga won the rights to L.A.’s third center position as the Lakers sent Chris Mihm to Memphis for a draft pick, and made the most of his 7.9 minutes per game in the regular season by blocking 1.04 shots in that time. He even inspired his own cheering section of the upper deck with fans often sporting “Banging with Mbenga” t-shirts.

Mbenga will join the Belgian National Team this summer in preparation for EuroBasket 2009, while Powell, star of J-Peezy’s Playlist, is currently working out in his hometown of Atlanta.

Josh Powell: Exit Interview

blog_090618joshpowellFinding time on the basketball frontcourt floor when Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom are on your team, but Josh Powell made the most of his when receiving burn, putting up 17 points and nine boards in a late-season game against Houston that was missed by Odom and Bynum.

As such, he earned the respect and trust of his teammates and coach, and ended up playing an underrated role in terms of keeping the team loose behind the scenes.

Overall, he averaged 4.2 points and 2.9 rebounds in 11.7 regular season minutes and 2.1 points with 1.2 boards in 5.2 postseason minutes.

The highlights of his exit interview:

- “The meeting went very well,” he said. “They told me, aside from the business aspect, what they wanted me to work on with the offense and certain skills. Not that I know how I can get my shots and be productive. My jump shot, picking and popping, going up more quickly after getting offensive rebounds…”

- On his contract situation, as L.A. has a team option they can choose to pick up: “They didn’t give any promises or guarantees. They appreciated my effort this year and that I came in and worked hard every day. They have a lot of decisions to make.”

- Powell talked about how hard it was to be where he was in the rotation, but acknowledged that he couldn’t worry about it and had to focus only on working hard and contributing where he could.

- On his role of keeping the team loose, alongside Lamar Odom: “I kind of let my personality flow with every team the best I can. Everyone was close and open … We had more of a family bond and could show more of our personality.”

- Powell’s a big Phil Jackson fan: “I told Phil today: I just appreciate him for allowing guys to be players on the court and go learn. You want to perform for him. There were times when I made two or three mistakes and he left me in the game. I appreciate that because lots of coaches (don’t have that patience).”

- On making the first three of his career to close Game 1 of the Finals: “You see, I got a wet ball.”

- Powell’s had a very difficult path to the NBA which included stints in Europe and the NBA D-League, but said he won’t regret anything about it since that’s where his dedicationa nd hunger comes from: “A lot of these guys are drafted, lottery picks, I was undrafted and had to really, really work to get to this point.”

- Even being in the parade last night it still hadn’t settled in for Powell and his family, who’s been by his side throughout his journey: “Just to see the response from the fans and the city, I don’t know… Crazy.”

- Powell said he kept his hair out in the parade because he promised us he would, which we appreciate to an extreme degree: “I did because I promised you.”